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Avoid these common — and outrageous — mistakes at job interview

With competition for open positions remaining high, the added pressure and stress may be causing some job seekers to make unnecessary mistakes during their interviews that could cost them the job. A new nationwide CareerBuilder survey of more than 2,400 hiring managers conducted Nov. 15 to Dec. 2 reveals the outrageous and common mistakes that some candidates have made in job interviews. PRNewswire

Most outrageous

When asked what were the most outrageous blunders they had encountered while interviewing candidates, hiring managers reported that an interviewee:

• Provided a detailed listing of how a previous employer made them mad.

• Hugged the hiring manager at the end of the interview.

• Ate all the candy from the candy bowl while trying to answer questions.

• Constantly bad-mouthed spouse.

• Blew her nose and lined up the used tissues on the table in front of her.

• Brought a copy of his college diploma that had obviously been white-outed and his name added.

• Wore a hat that said "take this job and shove it."

• Talked about how an affair cost him a previous job.

• Threw his beer can in the outside trash can before coming into the reception office.

• Had a friend come in and ask "How much longer?"

Common mistakes

In addition to the most unusual gaffes, employers shared the most common mistakes candidates made during an interview:

• Answering a cell phone or texting during the interview

• Dressing inappropriately

• Appearing disinterested

• Appearing arrogant

• Speaking negatively about a current or previous employer

• Chewing gum

• Not providing specific answers

• Not asking good questions

Tips for successful interviews

Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources for CareerBuilder, offers the following tips for successful interviews in a competitive job market.

Keep it upbeat: Many job seekers may be experiencing tougher than usual job searches in this economy. Even if your job search process has been frustrating, do what you can to remain positive and upbeat.

Prepare, prepare, prepare: Before the interview, research the company by looking at the press room for recent announcements, the About Us section for company culture, and the list of products so you are familiar with their offerings. Having this knowledge will allow you to easily answer and ask questions during the interview.

Keep it professional, not personal: Don't let business decorum disappear even if the interview is in a casual setting. Refrain from discussing over-the-top personal issues and focus on the position and selling yourself.

Practice does make perfect: Nerves are likely to rear their head in an interview, so help calm them ahead of time by practicing. Go through common interview questions with a friend or family member and practice in front of a mirror so you can see your body language.

Honesty is the best policy: If questions come up that you don't know how to answer, don't lie or pretend you know. Admit that you may not know the answer, but then explain how you would go about finding a solution, proving your resourcefulness.

Avoid these common — and outrageous — mistakes at job interview 02/01/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 1, 2011 3:30am]
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